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Does Something Sublime Happen Upon Seeking Optimal Control?

Prof. Herschel A.Rabitz

Charles Phelps Smyth Professor of Chemistry, Princeton University, USA

The control of physical, chemical, and biological phenomena are pervasive in the sciences. The dynamics involved span vast length and time scales with the associated controls ranging from shaped laser pulses out to the application of special chemical reagents and processing conditions. Despite all of these differences, there is clear common behavior found upon seeking optimal control in these various domains. Evidence of this common behavior will be presented from the control of quantum, chemical, and biological processes. The most evident finding is that control efforts can easily beat the so‐called “curse of dimensionality” upon satisfaction of assumptions that are expected to widely hold. Quantum phenomena provide a setting to quantitatively test the control principles. The potential consequences of the observations will be discussed.


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